The Jewish Journalism of Joel Shurkin

Monday, November 28, 2005

God googles Google

Snip, snip. You are on a mission from God so ignore Google—Researchers in South Africa, where HIV is rampant, found that men who were circumcised had half the cases of HIV than men who were not over a two year period. In the first random trial on the topic, involving 3,200. The uncircumcised, had 49 cases of HIV infection; the circumcised only 20. This is part of a long list of research projects showing that circumcised men have fewer sexually transmitted diseases. The research on HIV is in the newest Public Library of Science Medicine, the wonderfully free medical journal—which brings up an interesting point. If you search Google, you would not know that the preponderance of scientific evidence supports the health benefits of circumcision because the first pages in a Google search have been taken over by anti-circumcision groups, including the Circumcision Information and Resources Page (CIRP), which cherry-picks its data to tilt the balance against circumcision. Freud would probably have an excellent explanation. Circumcision is not politically correct these days and fewer baby boys in the U.S. are being circumcised. It’s one of the problems with Google—what you get is not what you are looking for always because it can be corrupted. If you use Google to decide what to do about your baby son, you have to work hard to get unbiased information. Use Google’s Advanced Scholar Search, which is less prone to being tilted, and you will get an entirely different, and far more accurate picture. The American Academy of Pediatrics calls it elective surgery. You don’t do it to your kid just just to prevent diseases, especially HIV, which is still relatively rare in the U.S., but there are known health benefits and few if any disadvantages. Unless, of course, your are Jewish, in which case it is a non-issue. We’ve been doing it before HIV and probably before most STD evolved.


  • At 8:18 PM, Blogger chsw10605 said…

    Joel, I think that you should re-title this post "Snipping STDs."

  • At 10:26 AM, Anonymous Alan said…

    Hi. I would like to make friends with people who enjoy archeaology. I've joined this site (archeaology) to try to meet some new friends but I wondered if you knew of any other such sites.
    interested in archeaology

  • At 10:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    You think Freud would want to explain why people DON'T think cutting part of babies' penises off is a good idea? I don't think so. He did have something to say about those who DO.


Post a Comment

<< Home